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Getting to Know ... The Canal Days Waterball Chair PDF Print E-mail
Monday, August 05, 2013 12:00 AM


Staff Writer

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DELPHOS—While tooling around the downtown streets of Delphos on Saturday afternoon during the Canal Days celebration—especially near the fire station—don’t be surprised to experience drops, sprays or even heavy downpours of water while the Waterball Contest is taking place.

The event is becoming more and more popular and Delphos Fire Association President Jamey Wisher is rounding up five-person teams to participate.


Wisher has been chairing the event for the past five years. He and members of the Fire Association and firefighters enjoy helping out with the Canal Days activities because it allows them to give back to the community.


“Event Coordinator Diane Sterling asked me to bring waterball back to the Canal Days activities because they used to have it in the past,” Wisher explained. “I took it back to the fire association and we agreed to do it.”

When it comes to preparing for the event, Wisher says that he lines up the equipment; fire trucks, dump trucks, special nozzles, cables and the ball and other firemen help referee and set it up.

“The members of the fire association help me out with all of this,” Wisher detailed. “Diane Sterling helps take the registration.”

Currently, there are only two teams signed up for the competition—A and B Squads—and both are comprised of Delphos fire- fighters. Wisher explained they have tried to get other departments involved in the past but busy schedules have kept them from engaging in the event. Each year, local businesses are invited to form teams and participate.

“Battle of the Businesses chair Cindy Metzger has been very helpful in getting teams from local businesses set up for the event,” Wisher said.

During the competition, Wisher explained that the nozzle men have the job of keeping the stream of water on the ball but it does not always happen that way. During past contests, the back-up nozzle man has had the stream of water too low and knocked the helmets off of their own guys. In addition, the lead nozzle man has sprayed the audience accidentally.

As for the competition between the two squads, a plaque hangs in the clubhouse displaying the winner each year and the plaque is very one-sided.

“We have created quite a rivalry between the two squads of the fire department,” Wisher added.

Wisher said that it is also interesting to see the reaction of the players (who are not firemen) using the fire equipment because it is not as easy as it looks.

“Probably the most interesting player we have had was Bob Ulm,” Wisher said with a smile. “It made for an exciting match!”

Wisher’s favorite part of the Canal Days festivities is the Waterball Contest.

“It is something we as an association look forward to,” he said proudly.

The contest will be held at 12:30 p.m. on Sept. 21 in front of the fire station. The entry fee for a team is $50 and must be paid at the time of registration. Cash prizes will be awarded to the first and second place finishers if more than four teams are pre-registered.

For more information, call Wisher at 419-235-5710.

Last Updated on Wednesday, August 07, 2013 12:15 AM

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